Going To The Sun Road Closed

Checking in on Glacier National Park, it says that Going To The Sun road is still closed and currently being ploughed.


Visitors can drive 15.5 miles from the West Entrance to Avalanche, and 13.5 miles from the St. Mary Entrance to Jackson Glacier Overlook.

The section of the road between Avalanche and Jackson Glacier Overlook is closed due to plowing. On the West Side, hiker/biker access is to The Loop while the road crew working, approximately 8 miles past the vehicle closure. When road crew is not working there is a hard hiker/biker closure at Logan Pass, approximately 16 miles past the vehicle closure. On the East Side, the hiker/biker closure is at No Stump Point (just beyond Siyeh Bend) approximately 3 miles past the vehicle closure.

Glacier Park Roads 13 June 2021

Glacier Park Roads 13 June 2021

Still inside the typical ranges:


Open Season
Portions of Going-to-the-Sun Road remain open all year and provide access to many locations and activities. The opening of the alpine portion varies, based on snowfall and plowing progress. There is no set date for the road to open. Typically the road has been fully open in late June or early July.

Closing portions of Going-to-the-Sun Road is also weather dependent. Typically the road is fully open until the third Monday of October, but that can change due to weather conditions at any point.

To help you plan, check out past opening and closing dates. (60 KB pdf)

But past dates have some significantly earlier than now.

Year Opening 
1933 July 15  
1934 June 1 
1935 June 13 
1936 June 11 
1937 June 12 
1938 June 11 
1939 May 27 
1940 May 28
1941 May 28 
1942 June 14
1943 July 10 
1944 June 6 
1945 June 15
1946 June 11
1947 June 15
1948 June 11
1949 May 30
1950 June 15
1951 June 9

Sure looks like the late ’30s were warm. Opening in May (and with much less competent equipment then, too)

For these later years, they have both opening and closing dates ( I’m skipping a bunch in the middle)

Year Opening Closing
2000 May 27  Oct 16 
2001 June 7  Oct 22 
2002 June 28 Oct 28 
2003 May 30  Oct 28 
2004 May 30  Oct 18 
2005 May 22  Oct 31 
2006 June 23 Oct 23
2007 July 1  Sept 16
2008 July 2  Oct 20
2009 June 26 Oct 19
2010 June 24 Oct 18
2011 July 13 Sept 17
2012 June 19 Sept 16
2013 June 21 Sept 23
2014 July 2  Sept 22
2015 June 19 Oct 5
2016 June 16 Oct 10
2017 June 28 Sept 3 
2018 June 22 Sept 29
2019 June 22 Sept 25
2020 July 13 Oct 9

Gee, several opening dates in July in the 2000 era… Doesn’t look exceptionally warm / snow melted to me.

There’s foot notes on a lot of these, that I’ve left out. If you care, hit the link. Here’s one example from 2011:

h) Exceptional snowpack year and continued winter weather through June.

So 2011 was an “exceptional snowpack” and had continued winter weather THROUGH June. Doesn’t sound very “warm” to me either.

They blame the late opening of 2020 on “Covid”. Yeah, right. ‘Cause working alone on a snow plow is so crowded… /snark;

q) Late opening due to COVID-19 pandemic. Road open from West Entrance to Rising Sun only. First time in history a portion of the Going-to-the-Sun Road remained closed for an entire season.

Any bets on them claiming the late open this year will be due to excess snow left over from last year and, muh, covid?

Whatever. It looks like time to start watching the Going To The Sun Road opening this year.

Just as a reminder, at one point the Park Service was hysterically saying the glaciers would be gone by… by… last year.


which points to:


National Parks Quietly Toss Signs Saying Glaciers ‘Will Be Gone’ By 2020 (They’re Growing)
by Jeff Dunetz | Jun 10, 2019 | Climate

SHHHHHHHH!!! The National Park Service has quietly removed all the signs put up by the Obama administration that told visitors that the glaciers would “all be gone” by the year 2020 due to global warming… because… it’s 2019, and the glaciers are all still there and have been growing.

Glacier National Park quietly removed a sign at its visitor center saying the glaciers will disappear by 2020 which were originally placed because former President Obama believed the predictions pushed by the left’s climate change hypothesis.

According to federal officials, several years in a row of high snowfall and cold temperatures totally obliterated a computer model that authorities relied on to claim that the glaciers would all be melted by 2020, Daily Caller reported.

Despite reality making a joke of the former computer model that made such a foolish forecast, the signs still hold to the global warming theme. The segment that once said the glaciers would for sure be gone by 2020 now reads, “When they completely disappear, however, will depend on how and when we act.”

The USGS still insists, “The overall picture remains the same, however, and that picture is that the glaciers all continue to retreat.”

The signage alteration was first noticed by climate writer Roger Roots who wrote last week, “As recently as September 2018 the diorama displayed a sign saying GNP’s glaciers were expected to disappear completely by 2020. The ‘gone by 2020’ claims were repeated in the New York Times, National Geographic, and other international news sources.”

“Almost everywhere, the Park’s specific claims of impending glacier disappearance have been replaced with more nuanced messaging indicating that everyone agrees that the glaciers are melting,” Roots added.

Both articles have a lot more in them. I found this bit particularly interesting (my bold):

Dr. Roots explains how the government skews the truth:

A major flaw in the government’s ‘before’ and ‘after’ approach is the omission of precise calendar dates. Every Montanan knows that mountain glaciers grow for 9 months of the year and then melt for 3 months. Thus a picture of a glacier taken in June or July will always show the glacier much larger than will a photo taken in early September. Comparing one year (“circa 1952”) to another year (“2005’) can be highly manipulative. Only a year-by-year, date-by-date comparison of photos taken at the end of the melt season (generally around the second week of September) will establish whether a glacier is growing or shrinking.

This year (2018) it quickly became clear that the glaciers have grown substantially in recent years. A startling example is seen at the Jackson Glacier overlook on the Going-to-the-Sun Road. The government has erected a sign with two photos: (1) the Glacier in 1911; and (2) the Glacier in 2009. The display shows the Jackson Glacier melting away to perhaps 10 or 20 percent of its 1911 size. But visitors to the marker in 2018 are able to look up above in the distance and see that the Jackson Glacier has grown significantly since 2009. The Glacier’s growth may be as much as 30 or more percent since 2009.

Sure looks like just normal cyclical changes to me. Now turned to colder and glaciers growing again.

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
This entry was posted in AGW and Weather News Events, AGW Climate Perspective. Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to Going To The Sun Road Closed

  1. p.g.sharrow says:

    As I remember in the 1950s highway 88 from Jackson to Kerkwood was closed until mid May due to heavy snow above Ham Station every year, As much 20feet accumulation at Silver Lake and Carson Pass by start of spring. They had to “Plow” it open with Miller blowers to open the road..

  2. John Hultquist says:

    The Washington State Passes have similar pages.
    Usually they have photos, such as

    If you are familiar with the road, steep slopes etc., the clearing process looks dangerous.
    A team will blast snow overhangs before the people and equipment moves uphill.

  3. John Hultquist says:

    About 1972 we came east to west and then south along Flathead Lake,
    where we bought a lug (16 pounds) of cherries. Such a big lake affects the local growing season.
    The drive was great, too.

  4. H.R. says:

    How do I get on that crew, John? What red-blooded guy doesn’t like to blow things up with dynamite? And get paid to do it!

  5. E.M.Smith says:

    During Ski season when I was skiing, there was a crew with a truck mounted gun (IIRC it’s a recoil-less rifle from W.W.II or a bit later). They use it to shoot at avalanche areas… ;-)

    Looks like they have an updated version using propane, but still have a backup:


    1. Equipment

    The system is called Gazex and combines oxygen and propane for controlled blasts.

    “It was developed in France and we’ve been using it since 1990, but it’s really come a long way to where we are at now,” Nelson said.

    2. How it works

    There are 13 cannons at Echo Summit along Highway 50 that are remotely detonated from a remote location in the town of Meyers a few miles away.

    “We don’t have to go in with hand charges—which was the old-fashioned way of doing it,” Nelson said. “So, it keeps our employees safer.”
    4. There is backup

    When the Gazex cannons on the summit don’t work, there is a gun mount at Echo Summit called a LoCAT, which fires a projectile into the summit that explodes near the surface to create a controlled slide.

    Don’t know if the LoCAT was the same gun I remember from the ’80s. Maybe they retired the truck mounted gun. IIRC it was hard to get new ammunition for it, even then.

  6. John Hultquist says:

    H. R.,
    If you want that snow job, here’s what you can expect.
    John Stimberis was in a class my wife taught at Central Washington University about 30 years ago. Video (13 minutes; WA-DOT) is worth watching – John explains what they do.

    I prefer to work in the better weather — volunteered with Washington Trails Association for many years. The Forest Service trail crews sometimes blow things up, but WTA crews do not.

  7. Graeme No.3 says:

    1923 Montana Glacier could disappear in 25 years
    Says Professor. Medford Mail Tribune (Oregon) Dec. 29
    1952 Montana’s Glacier Park may need new name
    The giant glaciers are melting away and could be gone in 50 years say naturalists
    The Post-Standard (Syracuse New York) Mar 05, 1952
    2009 No more Glaciers in Montana by 2020?
    National Geographic News March 2 2009
    2014 No more Glaciers in Montana by 2034?
    What will they call Glacier National Park (Montana) in 30 years when all the glaciers are gone?
    New York Times Nov. 22, 2014
    2019 Signs about glaciers disappearing by 2020 removed.

    P.S. Good snow in the alpine regions of Australia now. We had stories in 2014 about how the snow was going to disappear by this year.

  8. H.R. says:

    Hey, that’s an interesting video there, John. Quite a bit more to snow management than I was aware of. Thanks!

  9. E.M.Smith says:


    FWIW, I-80 from California on back east is an interesting road too. For a few States it parallels a river with OK fishing…

    Now the “scenery” outside of Colorado is just “nothing”. We’re talking days and days of Corn. Kansas is a full day+ and I don’t care how fast you drive (but I did get a ticket…) and Nebraska / Iowa… well, better like corn…

    OTOH, there’s a fair number of fishing spots. And Dad had a photo of him about 8? with a HUGE string of Mississippi Catfish from Davenport Iowa… Just sayin’…

    OTOH, Arkansas and I-40 have some charms…

    On its 2,555-mile journey from California to North Carolina, Interstate 40 spans the breadth of Arkansas.

    Some have described this transcontinental superhighway as “the most boring roadway in America,” and anyone who’s ever driven from Fort Smith to West Memphis would find it difficult to dispute that contention.

    Fortunately, the I-40 traveler need not venture far from the interstate to enjoy some of Arkansas’ most beautiful scenery and finest outdoor recreation areas. For example, in its 300-mile journey across the Natural State’s midsection, I-40 passes some of Arkansas’ finest crappie lakes. Five of these — lakes Dardanelle, Overcup, Conway, Dunn and Austell — are 15 minutes or less off the interstate. All offer fishing piers and bank-fishing areas where the road-weary traveler can stop and enjoy some great late-summer/early-fall fishing, no boat required.

    Lake Dardanelle

    This 50-mile-long honeyhole on the Arkansas River spreads westward from Dardanelle Lock and Dam at Russellville to cover 35,000 acres. Numerous access points with boat docks, campgrounds and parks are on the north side just a short drive off I-40.

    Lake Dardanelle State Park near Russellville is one great place to visit. Near the park’s fishing tournament weigh-in pavilion is a covered, barrier-free fishing pier, a popular facility for bank-fishing enthusiasts, sightseers and photographers because of its sweeping view of the lake and 1,350-foot Mount Nebo to the south. Casting a jig or spinner near brush fish attractors around the pier will almost always produce a few crappie, regardless of the time of year.

    If you bring a boat, you could fish every day for a year and not run out of topnotch crappie spots to try. Some the favorites this time of year include the Spadra Creek and Little Spadra Creek arms just south of I-40 at Clarksville, the Shoal Bay area near New Blaine on Arkansas 22 and waters around Shiloh Park on U.S. 64 just west of Russellville.

    For more information, visit the park website at http://www.arkansasstateparks.com/lakedardanelle/.

    Lake Overcup

    Continuing east on I-40 from Lake Dardanelle, one soon arrives at Morrilton. Just north of this Conway County community, only a five-minute drive off the interstate, is another exceptional honeyhole for Natural State crappies — Lake Overcup.

    This 1,025-acre Arkansas Game and Fish Commission lake has forged a place in the hearts of crappie enthusiasts throughout central Arkansas. Catching 30-fish limits is a cinch when conditions are good, and stringers are likely to be anchored with crappie in the 2-pound class.

    You can bankfish from the lake’s mile-long dam or from a jetty at the lake’s south end. Lake Overcup also has two wheelchair-accessible fishing piers: one adjacent Overcup Landing on the lake’s northeast corner and another beside Lakeview Landing, an angler concession just off Highway 95. At times, fishing around sunken brushpiles in deep water near the ends of the piers can produce dozens of 1- to 2-pound crappie.

    Much of the best fishing is in brushy, stump-laden waters accessible only by boat. In August and September, I usually start fishing jigs or minnows in shoreline cover near one of the boat ramps, then move to stump fields where the biggest fish often hide.

    Two exits on Interstate 40 at Morrilton provide access to the lake. Turn north at Exit 107 to follow Arkansas 95 to Lakeview Landing. To reach Overcup Landing, turn north at Exit 108 and follow Highway 9 to its junction with Highway 915. Turn west on Arkansas 915 to the lake.

    For additional information, including a map, visit the AGFC website, http://www.agfc.com.

    Lake Conway

    This 6,700-acre AGFC lake adjacent I-40 just east of Conway serves up great action for slab crappie. Fishing can be superb in late summer and early fall, with some crappie moving shallow as the water starts to cool. Crappie weighing 1 1/2 to 2 1/2-pounds are fairly common, and during recent years, I’ve seen several Conway crappie exceeding 3 pounds.

    Perhaps the best thing for the traveler making a stop is the variety of fishing areas accessible without a boat, all of which are marked on the lake map you can download at http://www.agfc.com. Good bank-fishing areas are available at Lawrence Landing on the lake’s west side, at the Palarm Creek and Adams Lake access areas on the east side, and at the Arkansas 89 bridge on the south. The latter site is especially popular with local crappie fans, as heavyweight slabs haunt flooded timber adjacent deeper boat lanes there. Anglers can fish from the bank on both sides of the highway bridge. This is a great place to pull off I-40 for a few minutes of fishing and a respite from interstate travel.

    Also available are two handicapped-accessible fishing piers. One is on the Pierce Creek arm, just a few miles east of the interstate on Arkansas 89. There’s another, the Gerald Ward fishing pier, just south of the Lawrence Landing access off West Street, and a third adjacent the Adams Lake access. Small jig/spinner combos worked around brush or timber flats in these areas often prove deadly on big crappie.

    Exit 135 (Mayflower) on I-40 offers access by way of Arkansas 365 (on the west side of I-40) to docks on the west side of the lake, or by Arkansas 89 and Clinton Road (east of I-40) to docks on the east side.

    Lakes Dunn and Austell

    The 90 miles of I-40 from Little Rock east to Forrest City cross flat-as-a-pancake delta farmland. At Forrest City, however, travelers notice a narrow band of low hills called Crowley’s Ridge. North on the Ridge, about a 15-minute drive from I-40, are two more fine crappie lakes: lakes Dunn and Austell in 7,000-acre Village Creek State Park.

    Most folks who fish Dunn and Austell are after one thing: big bass. That’s good for crappie fans, because crappie are practically untouched here. Two-pounders are rare, but at times, you can catch 1- to 1-1/2-pound eaters as fast as you can cast a jig or minnow.

    Dunn and Austell are small — 65 and 85 acres, respectively — so crappie generally are easier to find than on large impoundments. In late summer and early fall, anglers should concentrate efforts around standing trees, stumps, logs and other cover along the shoreline. I fish most often from the dams where there are plenty of open areas allowing you to cast tangle-free to nearby brush and other crappie cover. I also like fishing from the boat docks on both lakes. Big crappie often hide in the shade below these structures.

    To reach Dunn and Austell, take Exit 242 off I-40 just east of Forrest City and travel 12 miles north on Arkansas 284 to the park. For more info, visit http://www.arkansasstateparks.com/villagecreek/.

    The waters I’ve described are just a few of the great fishing spots you can find just off I-40. When the interstate is driving you crazy, just pull out your map and look for some blue waters to fish. There’s no better way to make travel on the four-lane more enjoyable.

    Just sayin’…

  10. H.R. says:

    @E.M. – I lived for about 3 years in a little corner of the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers. I was about a mile and a half South of the Missouri and about the same or a little further West of the Mississippi.

    If I went to the back corner of the neighborhood where I was, you could look out from the top of the bluff an see where the two rivers merged. (Quite a sight!)

    I was working for McDonald Douglas then and had moved to the area with my son (5th grader) while the Mrs. stayed home to sell our house. Most of my fishing was in park ponds for bass, bluegill, and crappie.

    My son would go off and play while I fished and kept an eye on him.

    I didn’t develop an interest in catfishing until about 2009 or 2010. We had been going to Florida and Hilton Head Island, SC and I had acquired some heavy saltwater equipment that I lugged back and forth to the ocean a couple of times a year. The rest of the time it sat in the basement.

    Then I got to thinking that the saltwater gear would be perfect for catfish and I could use it a lot more while at home.

    So now, for freshwater fishing, my focus has been on getting really good at catching bluegill to use as live bait for catfish, and them heaving out a few heavy lines for catfish baited with bluegill.

    I have caught so many bass, crappie, and walleye, and pretty much at will, that it was no longer much of a challenge.

    The hunt for that monster catfish is my new freshwater challenge and has really been a great time fishing.

    I regret that I wasn’t interested in catfishing when I lived in Missouri. I was in the ideal spot to run down and set up in about 15 or 20 minutes where I had a shot at 70, 80, and 90 pound river monsters. Dang!

  11. mddwave says:

    Last May, my family planned to go to Glacier National Park on the first weekend in July. We even go the car pass to park main road. I have been following the status of the “Highway to the Sun”. Your post is not encouraging.

    At least, we will get a break from the heat of Southwest United States.

  12. YMMV says:

    “Now the “scenery” outside of Colorado is just “nothing”. We’re talking days and days of Corn. Kansas is a full day+ and I don’t care how fast you drive (but I did get a ticket…) and Nebraska / Iowa… well, better like corn…”

    Ah, I was still looking up the Dalton Highway. I haven’t decided yet whether it is a whole lot of nothing or a must-see. 500 miles of loose packed narrow gravel road with potholes and washboard. Some gravel roads you can drive fast, others are truly punishing. On your body and your sanity, not to mention the tires, the suspension, the windshield, and so on. Strange that I have never heard of any friends or their acquaintances driving it. To top it off, one internet comment said that it ended at the Prudhoe Bay oil camp and you can’t get in and you can’t get to the waters of the Arctic Ocean. (info might be dated)
    “We did about 25 mph tops the whole trip and still got 3 flats!”
    With a title like this “Breathtaking scenery along an amazing highway – spectacular journey!” you might expect some good scenery — reading that article, the author flew the length of the highway and only drove a short bit. Flying sounds good. Alaska is known for its bush pilots.

    For alternatives, there is the Inuvik-Tuktoyaktuk Highway in Canada. Probably more boring,
    But you can get to the Arctic Ocean. That highway continues where the Dempster Highway ends,
    I have not been there but the photos show that the Dempster does have spectacular parts.
    “The Dempster Highway is the most fun you can have while sitting down.”

  13. E.M.Smith says:


    At Deadhorse / Prudhoe, you check into the hotel, and take a shuttle bus to the Arctic Ocean:

    Watched a video of a family in a 4 x 4 w/ trailer do just that. Covered their run up the Dalton too. Don’t know if I could find it again… It did convince me of a few things, like, carry extra gas and tires / repair kits. Losing a tire can take days to get a new one, and ‘town’ can be a great many miles away. A winch is helpful at times, but if you get off the road into the muck, other travelers stop and help. There’s a LOT of bugs some months. Bears are an issue. Traction is an issue. Rattling things loose is an issue. etc. etc.

    IF I ever manage to do this, I’ve pondered the value of flying to Fairbanks, buying a sturdy used truck there, driving it up the Dalton, then back down the Al Can to where I flew out of (somewhere in Canada…) and then just sell it and get back in my own rig. Couple of thousand punishing miles NOT put on my car… OTOH, it would be a “minimal rig” as you don’t buy a whole Overland Camping Setup for a week or two…

    Per Prairie:

    FWIW, after crossing the Prairie a few times, including a sampler from Calgary to the Rockies… The Victoria B.C. run into the Rockies is a LOT more interesting. OTOH, leaving St. Louis (that is a great place to bum around for a while…) there just isn’t much to see until you are about 1/4 of the way into Colorado. IF you start at Chicago and cross Iowa & Nebraska, well, like I said “Better like corn”. There’s some hills and if you follow some of the rivers, good fishing, but it helps to have local info for that. Depending on which road you take across the country, they often quasi parallel one of the major rivers for long segments of it. Platte, Arkansas, Missouri river. This map of rivers is a good visual aid:

    I’ve sometimes pondered spending the money for various State licences to “Fish across America”. IIRC, it was the Platte River and I-80 where I was first pulled to that idea. Then later crossing the Canadian & Arkansas rivers a few times on I-40? tickled it again.

    On the far north I-90 you have the Columbia, then the Missouri River, and in Minnesota it is thousands of lakes.

    But I’ve always been in a hurry to get somewhere for some event, so not been able to stop a while and smell the roses (or taste the fish ;-)

    I think the major “Trails” across the country tended to follow rivers (both for water supply and because crossing them was hard, so easier to just follow until it was a creek near the headwaters). Then later the settlements and towns along those trails got connected with paved roads and eventually that’s where the InterState Highway tended to run. In any case, you often are near one of those major West / East (slightly south-ish) rivers. I-10 mostly crosses N/S rivers, at least until the Gila in New Mexico / Arizona. It follows a Railroad Line mostly, not a wagon trail.

    Oh, and honorable mention to I-70. IF you actually want to cross the Rockies in Colorado (elevation much higher than elsewhere) and don’t mind sometimes getting a traffic jam at the Tunnel… Taking I-70 has spectacular views.

    Planning on how to route the freeway over the Rocky Mountains began in the early 1960s. The US 6 corridor crosses two passes: Loveland Pass, at an elevation of 11,992 feet (3,655 m) and Vail Pass, at 10,666 feet (3,251 m).[2] Engineers recommended tunneling under Loveland Pass to bypass the steep grades and hairpin curves required to navigate US 6. The project was originally called the Straight Creek Tunnel, after the waterway that runs along the western approach. The tunnel was later renamed the Eisenhower–Johnson Memorial Tunnel, after U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower and Colorado Governor Edwin C. Johnson.

    Yeah, elevations in the 5 figures, a freeway that hangs on the side of the mountains in some sections, and weather can be interesting…

    Last time I took that route was a good 40 years+ ago… Mostly because I’m ON I-80 and it takes some effort to get down to I-70. Easier to do it from Los Angeles. Son took that route to Chicago some years back (in the Banana Boat no less…).

    It is a really spectacular route through the mountains, but watch the traffic especially at the tunnel and realize that your vehicle will operate differently above 7000 feet…


    Any of this useful to you? Or all old hat?

  14. p.g.sharrow says:

    Drove the AlCan twice in the early 70s, up in the early winter and down in the early fall. Early fall is the best time but beware of the Termination Dust. My brother and friends did it in summer on bikes a couple of years ago. Nice trip, Roads good, went up to Prudoe Bay just because.

    I know about the long distances and lack of service. Lost a rear wheel bearing on Steamboat Mountain and had to hitch hike into White Horse and back to fix my truck on the side of the road. Only took 10 hours to get running again. 3,000 miles from Anchorage to Redding, 53hours of driving time. Lots of scenery and miles of miles to cover. Take money and remember it can be over a hundred miles between road stops and services. These distances are well marked along the road from site to site. Pay attention. There is a lot of nothing between but an awesome trip.

  15. H.R. says:

    @E.M. – It’s a shotgun thing. Some is new and some is old hat.

    Colorado – Aunt and Uncle there. I visited them one Summer. They had a ranch of a little over 1,000 acres just outside of Glenwood Springs. They also had a cabin in Aspen.

    I made a return visit after they sold the ranch. You could locate their new house on a national map! It was in the corner of the junction of the Roaring Fork Creek and the Colorado River. Buried within the house was one of the earliest cabins built in that area. Someone built a fairly modern two-story home around it. The people who did that put some cabinet type doors in the wall at a few places. When you opened the doors, you could see the original cabin walls at a few interesting spots.

    Went across Colorado through Loveland Pass about 4 times, and while staying with the Auntie, we made a day trip out and back to Pueblo. It was an interesting town in the ’60s before it went all liberal.

    I once travelled all the way down the West coast highway with my brother. We went up I-5 to about the Middle of Oregon and turned left. When we hit the coast, we started down towards L.A., where my brother and I both lived. We took a week. We had a small tent and some blankets and camped out at night.

    Had another brother and some friends in Wisconsin. We visited up there a couple of times. Once in Winter to go skiing with our friends. Used to go skiing in Pennsylvania. Many trips to West Virginia to visit my wife’s relatives and trips to Kentucky to go caving. Tennessee is in the mix
    So….. shotgun… you’ve mentioned a lot of places I have NOT been as well as some where I have been, those being mostly in the upper Plains and Wyoming, Idaho, Washington State, The Dakotas and that neck of the woods.

    The thing about everyone’s comments on trips they liked is that, for sure, someone else hasn’t been that way and it might pique their interest.

    So, tell the tales of the roads and places of interest. Someone will find it interesting and useful.
    You just might want to put up a thread for favorite trips for tales of interesting roads or interesting destinations.

    Even the Brit and Oz contingents can chip in. There are places in the U.K. I’d be interested in seeing if we go that way to visit the wife’s family in Scotland. We are wanting to visit her cousin living in France right around where Simon Derricutt lives. Oz is on my bucket list, but I’m afraid I’ll be out of money and/or time before I get there. But I can dream, eh?

  16. cdquarles says:

    Um, that map with the Alabama river marked on it is incorrect. The Alabama starts near Montgomery, where the Coosa River system and the Tallapoosa River system meet near Horseshoe Bend (bit of history there). They need to move the label a bit south and make it go west to east.

  17. philjourdan says:

    Re: I-80 and corn.

    Almost the same on i-70 west of WV. Just boring corn. Or wheat or whatever they are planting that year,

  18. H.R. says:

    @E.M. – A National Fishing license is a great outstanding idea!

    Probably never happen. The States are too smart to let the Feds take a cut of the revenue before they receive their 50¢ from each license sold for $200 or more.

    They get much, much more money from charging outrageous rates for non-resident licenses.

    Oh… up until 10 or 15 years ago, most (all?) States on the coasts and the Gulf did not require a license for saltwater fishing. If your line was in the ocean, you were good to go. A few States had odd rules like you couldn’t be on land, so you had to fish from a dock, pier, or boat. Then they realized they were missing out on revenue and started requiring a separate saltwater license.

    The saving grace is that most, if not all States, don’t require a license for Seniors. The age varies by State, but if you live long enough, you fish for free until you die 😁 That’s about as close as we get to a National license, which is no license at all.
    I always check the fishing laws and requirements/restrictions online before I even travel through a State where I might stop and fish. As best I know, all the Fish and Game departments in every State are really gonzo about enforcement and penalties are steep. The penalties are usually fairly high dollar and a lot of States include forfeiture of all equipment! (“Nice boat there. Hand over the keys.”)

    You’re likely better off shooting someone at noon on the Steps of the Statehouse in any State. The penalties are less severe.

  19. E.M.Smith says:


    Um, it’s not the Alabama, it’s the Arkansas. (I know, nearly impossible to read it on the map…)


    Near where I grew up was one of the strangest “busts” by a Game Warden.

    Local Hot Shot Country Boys liked to illegally fish at night in a Game Reserve area. Never could get caught because they would lite out at any sign of someone approaching, they knew every way to drive away. Local Game Warden was Epic in many ways and had a Reputation to uphold.

    Immovable object meets unstoppable force…

    One night, Good Ol Boys are fishing at about 2 AM. Hook a nice big one… Reel it in. Warden rises out of the weeds and water where he’s been using SCUBA gear to not be seen… Yup, they finally cast it close enough to the Warden that he was able to grab it and “let them catch him”… so he could catch them.

    No chance of bugging out as they were all on foot and the Game Warden had his gun out…

    They’s real serous about Game Wardening in my home turf…

  20. cdquarles says:

    I beg to differ, our most gracious host. I expanded the map. It clearly has “Alabama” along the Coosa River. The actual Alabama River begins near Montgomery after the confluence of the Coosa River system and the Tallapoosa River system near Horseshoe Bend (east-northeast of Montgomery, and a bit east-southeast of Wetumpka) and runs to the confluence of the Tombigbee River near Jackson, AL; where it splits into the Tensaw, Middle, and Mobile Rivers before entering Mobile Bay. I am not disputing the location of the Arkansas River at all. The Coosa River is an afternoon’s walk to the west of me. Hernando DeSoto visited it, reportedly, in 1540; along with visiting Coosa Town, an aborigine settlement roughly where the current Talladega creek meets the river.

  21. E.M.Smith says:


    My apologies. AKA “My Bad”. I’d talked about the Arkansas river and just assumed that was the reference. Especially when I looked at the map near the gulf and didn’t even SEE the Alabama River… Because, exactly as you were oh so patiently trying to get me to see, they had stuck the name way up where it’s really the Coosa River. Just sloppy.

    Better version here:


    I had actually (quickly I admit) looked near Mobile, not seen a name, and just figured it wasn’t on the map at all… when I could have just “looked where it isn’t” and seen the name. OTOH, I’d not embiggened the map and was squinting some…

  22. Simon Derricutt says:

    H.R. – “We are wanting to visit her cousin living in France right around where Simon Derricutt lives.”
    If you can find Eauze on the map that’s a couple of miles away from here. My mum’s flat is available for visitors, though I’d need time to prepare it since it’s not been used for quite a while during the pandemic travel problems. Overall, though, I’m not expecting travel to ease up this year, and when it does become easier I expect the cost to have gone up quite a bit. Luckily I moved somewhere I’d want to go on holiday to, so I don’t need to go elsewhere.

  23. H.R. says:

    @Simon D: A year or so ago, maybe a bit longer, You mentioned where and I knew it was in the region where the cousins are. You gave the name where you were staying. I didn’t know the name of their little town. I still don’t although I may (or may not!) have been given the name.

    All the communication is by email and skype, so It’s not like we need an address for sending post cards. That just doesn’t happen anymore. The Mrs. keeps forgetting to ask her cousin where she is, so I can never look up the distance on the map. And I told her I wanted to visit you – long lunch or something – so she knows why she should ask. But, she has forgotten by the time next time she and her cousin interact.

    They have a nice old stone-walled house and it has plenty of room. So we’d be staying with them.

    Yup. No travel to France this year or possibly even next year, but we are looking for a return to close-to-normal travel so we can visit.

    I just know for certain that you’re close enough for a visit; maybe a couple of hours and maybe much, much closer than that.

    So when we make it over to France, E.M. is always happy to pass email addresses “behind the scene” so we can connect and make our own arrangements. Until then it’s best to keep under the radar and keep email addys and what not private.

    If the TLAs show an interest in me for some reason, no need to have you dragged into it, eh?

    I’ll most certainly let you know when to start leaving the porch light on for me 😁

  24. Simon Derricutt says:

    H.R. – considering the line of research I’m following, the TLAs might well end up more focussed on me than you. However, so far looks like they think it’s just crackpot thinking and impossible, since I’ve been pretty open on the theory side. Also, I do know a fair number of people who do have crackpot ideas – goes with the Free Energy territory. Still, some of them could be right, too.
    Email here is my name with a dot between first and second, and then at orange dot fr. Actually published in the open on R-G since that was a requirement. Also same at wanadoo dot fr for historical reasons.

    It’s actually easy to find my postal address, too. This place is after all officially a business. However, not so easy to find it on the ground, given the lack of street names and house numbers in this hamlet. The posty knows where we are, but it’s a bugger to get a delivery by some other way such as Amazon or other carriers. However, dead easy to find with a bit of description of the terrain and roads. No navigation by pubs here, as I used to find useful in the UK.

    Still, if you do end up coming over here, I’d be pleased to meet you and yours and provide lodging if required. Should be great fun if you make it.

  25. YMMV says:

    The road is still closed. The park plowing status page has a link to plowing photos 2021:

    4-22-2021 Plowing the Going-to-the-Sun Road in the section called The Alps

    Those are not your typical snowplows! I will wait until they finish, thank you, but now I have to drive it.

  26. H.R. says:

    @Simon Derricutt: I’ll piece together your email addy and add it to my contact book. That’s a paper contact book, BTW. I don’t depend on electronic contact files. I have them, but I have had them go up in smoke a few times.

    Lord willin’ and the creek don’t rise, we hope to visit in the Summer of next year or most likely, in 2023, given the wacky (i.e. evil) behavior of so many governments.
    At work, I had all of my work contacts on my PC. There were a lot of them. However, I would print out a paper copy from time to time as well as backing them up on a thumb drive.

    The paper copy came in handy a couple of times when I was on vacation and things went South. Because the company was so small, there were many areas that were my responsibility and so there were a lot of things that only I knew. I got calls twice over the years asking who to call for something that was down. I checked my paper copy and then they were good to go.

    Yes they had my contact list there on my computer at work, but the names meant nothing to whoever it was that was covering for me and the company name often didn’t reflect what the person who could help actually did.

    There was no third call for help. I printed out my list and and wrote what equipment was associated with that name or company right beside the contact. The list sat on my desk whenever I was away. That worked, and the list was particularly helpful to those who took over my job after I retired. (3 people! No kidding, and no wonder it took me 3 years to unwind after I retired.)

  27. E.M.Smith says:


    They have gone to some kind of phone reservation system to get a ‘pass’ to drive the road. Supposedly the 145 or so “passes” get gone about 2 minutes after the 8 AM opening that day. No, you can’t reserve them weeks in advance… There is some kind of bus service for folks who get skunked out of driving it.


    I think I’m seeing a pattern…

    At Apple, we ran our Supercomputer Center with a staff of about 30 (most of them doing network stuff. I had 3 systems programmers, an Email Guy, Me, and 2 others). Cray was amazed. Seems the absolutely smallest staff site other than us was over 200 staff…

    Something about being very fast, accurate, and efficient… along with having creative solutions to hard bits…

  28. E.M.Smith says:

    Interesting. I just read the closure notice on their status page. Only change I see is that they let hikers and bikers in on weekends when they are not working. Total length of closed segment is still the same. I guess maybe they are taking down the height of it, not clearing short segments to the pavement? Or maybe just closed at a point even if the pavement is clear a mile or two after that point (as maybe no way to turn around anywhere in that segment…)?

    So they are going to be closed through the Summer Solstice. Longest day of the year is tomorrow, IIRC. I bet they stay closed into July… Only 8 more work days for them this month.

    That would make for a 3 month open run. July, August, September. Or maybe 2.5 months ;-)

    I expect we will see glacier growth over the next decade of a lowest level solar cycle.

  29. E.M.Smith says:

    With just one week to go to July, we have this present status:

    Glacier National Park Current Road Status
    as of 10:01AM Mountain Time on 6-24-2021

    [map looks the same as the above one. -E.M.Smith]

    Visitors can drive 15.5 miles from the West Entrance to Avalanche, and 13.5 miles from the St. Mary Entrance to Jackson Glacier Overlook.

    The section of the road between Avalanche and Jackson Glacier Overlook is closed due to plowing. On the West Side, hiker/biker access is to The Loop while the road crew working, approximately 8 miles past the vehicle closure. On the weekends and when the road crew is not working there are no hiker/biker restrictions. On the East Side, the hiker/biker closure is at No Stump Point (just beyond Siyeh Bend) approximately 3 miles past the vehicle closure when the road crew is working. On the weekends and when the road crew is not working there are no hiker/biker restrictions.

    I think we’ve got a good shot at it still being closed in July. Only 5 more work days including today.

  30. E.M.Smith says:

    Well the road is open today per their web page. Didn’t quite make it to July…

    Still, far from an early opening…

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